Creativity in Literacy Practices

2396 words 10 pages
Creativity in Literacy Practices:
A TEXTUAL AND CONTEXTUAL APPROACH by Agatha Xaris Villa

INTRODUCTION

AT PRESENT, THERE ARE A NUMBER OF APPROACHES TO THE STUDY OF LINGUISTIC CREATIVITY. THEY DIFFER IN THE WAY THE WAY THAT THEY CONCEPTUALIZE WHAT COUNTS AS CREATIVENESS OR ‘LITERARINESS’ IN LANGUAGE AS WELL AS IN THE METHODS THEY USE TO IDENTIFY AND ANALYZE CREATIVITY IN EVERYDAY LANGUAGE.

This essay begins by discussing and exploring the premises of an analysis of creativity at text level following a textual approach to literacy and creativity; assessing the extent to which it is effective in identify creativity in literacy practices such as diaries, letters and graffiti. However, I would like to continue by presenting the argument
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Literacy practices are inherently creative in and of themselves.

The ethnographic perspective takes into account the broader social-political context within which creativity is located and through their examination of literacy practices and texts, advocates of the ethnographic approach found three major characteristics of creativity in writing. To begin, by focusing on people’s literacy practices rather than just texts, they noted that creative texts are produced as a result of interactive collaboration.

Diaries, although written by a single person, emerge from an individual’s account and reflection of events and various conversations and interactions with people. Diaries and journals are dialogic practices wherein the writer addresses and responds to a ‘reader’ and have the potential to be re-contextualized in different publications to address a wider readership (Maybin, 2006, p.269)

This dialogical aspect is more evident in web blogs or online journals in which people often (1) write in response to the entries of others, (2) write entries addressed to others and (3) write with the expectation and even the goal to get as much response from others.

Maybin (2006, p.273) tells us that letters are even more intensely dialogic in nature. I believe that letters are best viewed as mediums of ‘correspondence’ wherein we present written versions of our personal experience, relationships and identities in relation to an assumed reader who then responds by

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